The Great Woolly Worm Hunt

Still learning about birds in preparation for the RSPB Big School Birdwatch, Year 4 set off on a Woolly Worm Hunt. An activity designed to really make the children think about how birds feed and how difficult that can be, especially in winter.

Children work with a partner. They first create a small nest using dried grass and twigs. Each nest has a thick stick in it, this will represent the chick, safe in the nest. The nest is set down in the middle of the field. The challenge, whilst one bird guards the nest, the other flies off in search of woolly worms, these are hiding all around the Forest School. Only one worm can be carried back to the nest at a time and then it needs to be tied onto the “chick”. The game continues until the “chick” is full. At the end of the activity we reflect on the game. Remember don’t leave your nest unattended because birds of prey (Miss Rowe and Mr Mcmann) may swoop in and steal your worms, even worse they might take the whole chick!

Firstly the children were surprised how tired they got, only being able to carry one worm at a time means many trips. Understanding how much energy birds burn off looking for their food. We looked at our “chicks” together and talked about which colours were found most. The bright ones were all found quite early on, more muted colours took more time. In fact in this session no-one found any black or dark grey worms. What colour are many insects? Black and grey. So the birds really have their work cut out for them. Of course our woolly worms were set out for us but unless we feed the birds they have to fend for themselves. So at the end of the session children were sent off to see if they could find any real insects. A lovely morning of woodland play.

Principle 2: Forest School takes place in a woodland or natural wooded environment to support the development of a relationship between the learner and the natural world.

Article 24 – We all have the right to healthy food……..even the birds.

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